The course starts at Deftera and from there, it goes along the old road to Psimolofou, travelling through agricultural land, to reach the villages of Episkopeio and Politiko, near Agios Irakleidios monastery. From there it heads towards Filani and Machairas. The route from Politiko to Machairas monastery is a steady uphill, while that from Filani to Machairas monastery is a dirt track.
At a distance of 4km outside Politiko the road to the right leads to the village of Lazanias, while that to the left to the Agia Skepi chapel and the Machairas Monastery’s Educational Centre. After a mild ascent for about 3km, it comes across the Machairas quarry, from where a difficult climb begins going all the way up to the monastery. Just before the monastery, is the underground hideout of Gregoris Afxentiou, a Cypriot freedom fighter against the British. The road from here on is paved.
West of the monastery and to the right, is the road that leads to the villages of Lazanias, Gourri and Farmakas and joins up with the Lefkosia (Nicosia) – Pitsylia route. This route continues to the left and east and then once more turns to the north and starts descending. After 6km it goes past the Agios Onoufrios chapel and 3km further on it reaches the picnic site of Mantra tou Kampiou where public toilets and water are available. This is the official site of the 5,5km mountain bike piste of the Cyprus Sunshine Cup, where the international “Afxentia” race is held every year on the last weekend in February.
Past the picnic site, the course heads east on 6km of dirt road towards Lythrodontas. On the outskirts of the village the course turns north towards Analiontas, Tseri and Strovolos. Strovolos avenue leads back to Lefkosia.
Difficulty rate: A relatively difficult course climbing steadily for about 15km.It requires a mountain bike with a minimum of 27 speeds.
Road condition: A combination of paved and unpaved roads
Route description: Cyclists have the opportunity to visit the Machairas forest, the Machairas monastery, as well as the site where a local hero died in the struggle against British rule, Gregoris Afxentiou .
To download the route in gpx format click here
Elevation Gain: 1493m
Highest point: 1026m
Lowest point: 205m
Road surface: Paved
Section Distance (km) Total Distance (km)
Deftera 0,0 0,0
Psimolofou 2,0 2,0
Episkopeio 3,2 5,2
Politiko 1,2 6,4
Ag. Herakleidios Monastery 0,5 6,9
Filani 5,0 11,9
Machairas Monastery 13,8 25,7
Agios Onoufrios 4,5 30,2
Mantra tou Kampiou 3,2 33,4
Lythrodontas 7,2 40,6
Analiontas 6,7 47,3
Tseri 8,6 55,9
Tseriou St. roundabout 5,7 61,6
Courtesy of the CTO